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Rules and Profiles
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Rules and Profiles

The file that you edit to specify the client configuration is laconically called "rules". It is located directly under the JumpStart directory, presumably /jumpstart if you have followed the examples here. Hopefully, you have copied the sample rules file from the Solaris CD to the JumpStart directory. Edit that file, commenting out everything, and add the following line to the end of the file:

any - - basic.profile -

The Solaris Advanced Installation Guide fully describes the syntax of the rules file. The example here basically says: "match any machine, use the profile called basic.profile, and do not use begin or finish scripts." It is extremely simple but suitable for our purposes. When you have become more comfortable with the syntax of the rules file, you can try something like the following:

arch sparc && \

disksize c0t0d0s0 9000-18000 \

local.begin custom.profile local.finish

You must now create the forementioned profile basic.profile. A profile basically tells JumpStart whether we want to do an install or an upgrade, how to partition the disk(s), and what software to install. For now, use the following example:

install_type initial

system_type standalone

partitioning default

cluster SUNWCuser

If you want to specify partitions or particular packages, then you can use something more like the following:

install_type initial

system_type standalone

partitioning explicit

filesys c0t3d0s0 free /

filesys c0t3d0s1 512 swap

filesys c0t3d0s4 1024 /opt

cluster SUNWCuser

package SUNWtcsh add

(We definitely want the tcsh shell!)

You must now use the check script, located under the same directory, to verify your rules file and profile. The check script will notify you of any syntax errors. Once the check script has executed successfully, it will update the rules.ok file. If you subsequently decide to modify the rules file, you must rerun the check script.

Everything should now be setup to install the client system. From the ok prompt, type "boot net - install", cross your fingers, and watch. If you have succeeded, the client will contact the server, locate the sysid configuration, find the correct profile, and start the software installation process.

Several common problems typically foil the JumpStart process. If you see the error "timeout waiting for ARP/RARP packet", then the client cannot contact the rarpd daemon on the server. Check that the rarpd process is running, check that you have network connectivity, and remember that the boot server and the client must be located on the same subnet. If your network traffic is heavy, you may see the timeout error scroll by several times before everything works. In that case, you may want to consider creating a separate network for installations.

If you have successfully passed that hurdle but you are then prompted to enter any information, then you have not correctly configured the sysidcfg file. For example, if you are prompted whether or not to use Kerberos, then check that your sysidcfg file has the line "security_policy=NONE". If your sysidcfg file has any syntax errors, JumpStart will helpfully indicate them and then croak. If so, fix the errors and do another "boot net - install". When you see the message "System identification is completed" without being prompted for information, then you have succeeded.

The status window will then say "Searching for JumpStart directory..." A common problem is that the JumpStart directory cannot be located. Assuming you have setup the directory correctly, the cause may be another server on the same subnet running the rpc.bootparamd daemon, which confuses the client. To locate the "rogue" server, execute the command "rpcinfo -b 1000026 1" and look for responses from servers other than the your desired server. Shut down rpc.bootparamd on the "rogue" server(s) and do another "boot net - install". The JumpStart directory should now be located and the client should find the appropriate rule from the rules.ok file.

Hopefully, your install will now proceed successfully, the selected Solaris software will be installed, and your new client system will then automatically reboot.